The 2nd Edition of #DubaiGWE brings together 100 Global Wedding Stakeholders in Dubai

Business Events | February 7, 2019 | News

Dubai Tourism Dubai Global Wedding Excellence

The Global Wedding Excellence Forum and Retreat 2019 was the second edition of the much-celebrated wedding industry platform, initiated by Dubai Tourism. The 4-day fete fostered excellence through the participation of Global Wedding Planners, and showcased the potential of Dubai as a hub and premier destination for Weddings.

Commenting on the success of the initiative, Steen Jakobsen, Assistant VP, Dubai Business Events (DTCM) said, “We’ve just completed hosting the 2nd edition of the Dubai Global Wedding Excellence Forum and Retreat. Through this platform, global wedding planners have an opportunity to connect with one another and grow their business, and that’s really the role of Dubai Tourism, in insuring that we can provide business opportunities to our stakeholders. Dubai continues to grow as a destination for international weddings, and such platforms benefit the wedding couple and the planners, as they have so many opportunities to tap into”.

Wedding planners and expert stakeholders of the global wedding industry, gathered in Dubai from January 11 to 14, 2019, to experience why Dubai can make for the most dynamic wedding destination. Through a Leadership Forum, and expert knowledge-exchange sessions, participants also had a chance to discuss and address evolving requirements and challenges of the Destination Wedding industry.

Cemre Tepeler, Director, KM Events (Istanbul) commented on why Dubai makes for a very appropriate Destination for an International Wedding, “Dubai as a destination has different cultures of people living and working together, and different varieties and options for weddings and events, which makes it an excellent destination.”

Participants of the #DubaiGWE were hosted by the Jumeirah Zabeel Saray, Kempinksi Emerald Palace and Waldorf Astoria for their 3-night’s stay in Dubai. As host hotels, these partners had the unique opportunity of extending a sample of their hospitality to the leadership and influencers in attendance.

SNTTA and Equifax came on-board as the two official DMC-partners for the 4-day experience, where SNTTA took charge of all delegate transfers for Day 1 and 2, while handing over the baton to Equifax for the second-leg of days 3 and 4.

Day 1, January 11, 2019

Day 1 started off with a welcome reception at the Music Hall of host-hotel Jumeriah Zabbel Saray, featuring the official welcome address by Steen Jakobsen of Dubai Business Events (DTCM). This was followed by a leadership session by Rahul Kumar, Director, Vivaah Weddings, which gave delegates an all-encompassing insight into the Palm Jumeirah (Palm Island) as a destination within Dubai, for weddings.

The networking continued over high-tea in the lawns of the same hotel, where Rachna Chaddha of BAQAA Weddings, curated a quaint and intimate setting where participants had the chance to get to know one another better, around a camp-fire session or across a park bench, with an outdoor picnic styled event.

Participants then moved on to the Waldorf Astoria, another of the host-hotels for the official ‘Welcome Party and Dinner’ - curated by Focus Weddings Services by Mortiz Schubertz. The evening’s entertainment featured an illusionist, named Felipe Scherson, a belly dancer and other ambient dance performers, complimenting the tunes of DJ Khushi, the highlight act of the evening. Entertainment designers for the evening was Wild Goose Events & Entertainment.

Karishma Manwani from Karishma Manwani Events, London said, “#DubaiGWE has been a fantastic experience. We had opportunities to see a lot of venues and experience authentic Dubai which is always good.”

Day 2, January 12, 2019

Day 2 of #DubaiGWE featured ‘The Jumeirah Experience’ in the morning, where delegates were taken on an exclusive experience across flagship Jumeirah Hotels in Dubai, including the Jumeirah Beach Hotel, the Burj Al Arab and Madinat Jumeriah. The Jumeirah Experience ended with a lunch at Jumeirah Al Qasr.

Following this, delegates were transferred to the Al Habtoor City Complex, where a special viewing of the highly-acclaimed show - La Perle by Franco Dragone was organised for the group, in a n exclusive seating area. La Perle by Dragone is the region’s first permanent show, featuring 65 world-class artists.

After some rest in the early evening, guests all headed out to the Kempinski Emerald Palace, the third of the host-hotels, where the Sangeet (evening of Music / Dance) was hosted. The event was curated by Events by Saniya; while Showtech assisted with AVL; Food Inc by Yum Yum Tree, through their recently opened operations in the UAE, showcased a wide array of delectable, crafted, Indian Food; Real Flaming Trio partnered to showcase their Bar Solutions with speciality cocktails and mocktails. Anushka Arora was the host for the evening, while the abundantly-popular band, from the UAE -- Rooh entertained guests, fulfilled song-requests and ensured everyone was on the dance floor throughout the evening.

Anushka Arora, London-based Emcee and Host shared, “#DubaiGWE has been an amazing experience, it has connected me with so many wonderful people. And being connected is a big plus point in order for everybody to know more about each other in the industry.”

Day 3, January 13, 2019

Day 3 kickstarted with #DubaiGWE Leadership Forum at the FIVE Palm Jumeirah. The Objective of the Leadership Forum is to create an exclusive knowledge-exchange session to address the real requirements and challenges of the global destination weddings industry. The Leadership forum also served as the platform where the delegation could network with every supplier and partner to #DubaiGWE, while exchanging ideas about the business.  

A panel discussion featuring local-experts of the wedding industry, including Steen Jakobsen, Assistant VP, Dubai Business Events (DTCM); Arun Bablani, Director, Vivaah Weddings; Rohit Jain, Director, Equifax (one of the host-DMCs for GWE) and Jaydeep Anand, GM, FIVE Palm Jumeirah, allowed the delegation to address specific ambitions and requirements they had from Dubai as a destination for weddings. The leadership forum moved on to a networking lunch session at the roof-top venue of the FIVE Palm Jumeirah – The Penthouse, after which delegates took the afternoon off for some rest and relaxation.

The evening kickstarted with a cocktail reception at the Imperial Suite of the Palazzo Versace Dubai, a hugely popular wedding hotel featuring the uber-luxury Versace brand-styling. This was followed by the finale dinner reception which was curated by Encore the Design Studio by Chimoo Acharya at The Armani Hotel, Downtown Dubai. Guests were welcomed at the foot of the magnanimous Burj Khalifa, by the General Manager of the Hotel, following which they were lead into the ballroom of the hotel which featured entertainment including an aerial act & Illusionist, Suhail Khoury by Soul Artists, followed by an act by Armani Dubai’s exclusive in-house performer Bibi and then a final stand-up comic riot by Papa CJ.

Saheli Mirpuri, Saheli Events, London, expressed, “I had an amazing time meeting planners and suppliers from all around the world. It has been such a great experience, and beyond my expectations…”

Day 4, January 14, 2019

After check-out, delegates gathered at the Park Hyatt Dubai, for a see-off brunch. Each delegate was assigned their own private-transfers to the airport for their varying flight schedules, thus rounding up the exclusivity and speciality of this second edition of the #DubaiGWE.

Countries participating at the Dubai Global Wedding Excellence Forum and Retreat 2019 were from India, Lebanon, Bahrain, Nigeria, Kenya, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, United Kingdom, Turkey, Singapore, France, Malta, Italy, and Jordan. 

Kunal Rai, Vice President, Weddings and Events, Tamarind Global said, “Weddings in Dubai are amazing to do and Dubai GWE is a great opportunity for all the wedding planners to come from different parts of the world to experience Dubai and all of its offerings.”

The Second Edition of The Dubai Global Wedding Excellence Forum and Retreat took place from January 11-14, 2019 engaging over 100 Global Wedding Planners and Stakeholders through unique experiences.

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